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Where to find great video ideas: 6 ways to find topics for YouTube content

13 Mar, 2023

How creators come up with ideas for new videos

On YouTube, everything works holistically, so if you learn how to generate ideas for videos, but at the same time you don’t implement, design and promote them properly, this will have no use for YouTube.

Just having a great video idea does not guarantee you success. It is also important how you execute this idea.

  • Unique circumstances or case

Most travel vlogs are popular for several reasons: high-quality filming, outstanding presentation, and scenic spots that we have not been to or don’t have a possibility to visit.

To put it another way, through the videos of other people, we can compensate for what we ourselves cannot do in real life.

This same principle can be applied to any other topic. For example, collections of funny videos. We make up for the absence of situations that make us happy. Or the showcasing of devices: the creator compares two devices that you do not have, but you want to buy one, and so you are given a unique situation in which you can compare the two devices.

But note that these situations and circumstances are not unrealistic or fantastical - we can not conduct a tour of Mars. These are some example circumstances in which you can find yourself, but not your potential viewers.

Of course, to gain a bunch of views, the situation should be uniquely interesting. Remember that your viewers want to be where they can't be and want to do what they can not do. Your videos should feel like wish fulfillment for the audience or allow them to live vicariously through your activities.

  • Search queries you can answer

A search query is a question that people ask Google or type in the YouTube search bar.

You want to look for search queries that you can answer.  Searches that have a high volume of requests by people, but also have low competition. To put it simply, the videos for this request are either of poor quality, or there are simply not enough of them.

Ideally, you would like to create a video with a unique situation and a high volume search query, however, this is not reasonable for all cases. 

  • Popular topics of a niche

If you enter a simple search on YouTube for your niche, you may be surprised by how few high-quality videos you will find. For example, "How to cook rice" or "How to make a raft yourself." These videos get a lot of views because people are constantly looking for fairly simple answers to their questions. And they are content with what they receive.

  • Working with narrow topics in a niche

Here we are talking about requests related to specific topics that have relatively small search volume, but at the same time low competition.

What do we mean by that? Imagine that you are reviewing household appliances, specializing in a particular brand. And then the narrow topic in the niche will not be “a review of Xiaomi equipment”, but “a review of the Xiaomi Mi Smart Antibacterial Humidifier”. That is a review of a certain type of household appliance and a certain model.

Most likely, if a video with a specific recipe, device, or book has not gone viral and they do not have thousands of people reviewing them, then you will find relatively few videos of good quality and many low-quality videos that get good views.  From this, we may conclude that we need to shoot a video on this narrow topic that will be both useful and of high quality.

It is not necessary to make all videos only for narrow requests, you need to mix up your content. But this technique is one of the most successful when creating videos on small channels.

Some useful tips:

  • If this is a new channel that has low views, then most likely you have not hit your audience - you are hitting too wide a circle of potential viewers. Try to look for an audience with more specific niche videos.
  • If you are already an experienced channel with a decent number of subscribers - you have reached the monetization threshold, but your videos have stalled and are not bringing you views, then you probably need to think about expanding your audience. You should explore other, more competitive topics in the niche.

Tools to help you find ideas for videos

Of course, besides useful techniques and tips to brainstorm ideas for videos, tools that will activate our creativity can also come in handy.

Tip 1: Watch your competitors' most popular videos

This may sound trivial but data shows that out of a hundred percent of authors, only ten percent actually monitor their competitors.

Tip 2: Watch your most popular videos

Analyzing your own videos will help you understand which topic should be explored further. You can learn which of your videos should be refreshed or which should be adjusted and even updated. If you have an old video on your channel, for example, "how to get 1000 subscribers on YouTube" - shoot a new one. Platform algorithms are changing, and what worked five years ago may not work for today’s algorithm. If there are similar videos on your channel, be sure to study the topic, identify new ways, methods, or life hacks, and update your content.

Another option is to look at the best moments of interaction between viewers and your specific video. This can be a hint in choosing a topic for your next video.

Tip 3: Use YouTube analytics tools

The Audience tab in Creator Studio is there for a reason. We are interested in two things here: other channels and other videos that your viewers are watching. These are ideal tools for those who can't find competitors on their own, and for those who are stalled in finding new ideas for videos.

Tip 4: Use what YouTube gives you

Many people ignore the simplest features that the platform provides for free.

  • Surveys

A survey is a tool for those who have already reached the threshold of 500 subscribers on the channel, or have active pages and groups in other social networks. The best way to understand what your audience wants is to ask them directly. Have them choose topics. If the subscribers are people who are very lazy to join in and help, offer a symbolic prize. For example, a mention in a video. The audience will definitely become more active.

  • Comments

People ask hundreds of popular, similiar questions and many throw them very entertaining ideas for no reason. All you need is to spend time working through them.

  •  YouTube and Google search bar

Start with some trivial requests in your niche: "How to make ...", "What to create from ...", "What ways ...", "An easy way ...", "Why do we need ...", etc. Just take a look at what your audience wants to know about by starting to search for the most basic issues.

Tip 5: Explore social networks, interest groups, and forums

Posts or comments can spark your own ideas - you just have to put in the effort and try to find the right vloggers or discussion for your niche.

I would also like to mention online publications.

Do you think that newspapers and magazines only create topics for paper media? Of course not. There are niche-specific websites where journalists write their columns, editors post breaking news, and visitors chat. In addition, it is not uncommon for publications to interview various experts or link to useful sources that you can use in your videos.

Get inspired by online publications about science, beauty and health, business, and other topics that will be useful in your field.

Tip 6: Follow the chain of recommended videos

Log in to YouTube through the "Incognito" mode, enter the desired topic or niche in the search, and open a couple of videos so that YouTube marks the videos that are of interest to you. This allows the platform’s algorithms to use its internal search process for your benefit. You can now return to the main page and see relevant videos on the topic. This way, YouTube will offer you the most popular topics that people are most often clicking on.

A small life hack: before writing down the proposed topics, check their relevance through Google Trends. So you can understand which topic is becoming irrelevant, and which one is gaining momentum.

Are there any unique ideas for videos?

When you scroll through YouTube, you need to be aware that 99% of ideas are emulating other creators. Your "unique" topic will have another thirty more identical videos. What should you do if this is your situation? Take it easy and continue to make videos, adding your unique perspective to the work. Write your scripts from scratch, introduce your opinion, and use jokes. It is the high-quality execution of a specific video idea that already exists in the world that will make it truly unique.

Good luck creating some amazing content!



Sasha Lerman

Copywriter, writer, editor. Development and promotion on YouTube, as well as many other exciting topics.

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